Hummer brand is resurrected as an electric pickup
What began as the military-grade High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV, or Humvee) nearly four decades ago became the civilian Hummer H1 in 1998 when General Motors purchased the brand. Other Hummer vehicles were spawned, such as the H2 (based on the Silverado pickup platform) and the H3 (which was based on the Colorado).
Hummer became a symbol of gluttonous gas-guzzling excess, and production ended a decade ago as the financial crisis took hold. So, what better way to relaunch Hummer as an electric GMC pickup? Still excessive in The Sleuth’s eyes, the new Hummer has eyebrow-raising specs. How about 1,000 horsepower, a 550-kilometre maximum range and a zero-to-60-mph (96 km/h) time of 3.0 seconds. GMC plans four variations of the truck, beginning with the Edition 1 in late 2021 at a US $112,600 list price. Canadian pricing is not yet available. The last — and the least expensive version — would arrive for 2024 for US $80,000.
Karma preps for its first electric car
Amongst the slew of auto-industry start-ups, the company originally launched by Henrik Fisker (now called Karma Automotive) will introduce a companion to Revero hybrid sedan. The GSe-6 will reportedly resemble the Revero (née Fisker Karma), but will be built using a dedicated battery-electric platform called E-Flex.
The car, which will be assembled at Karma’s California plant, comes with a 110-kilowatt-hour battery pack providing up to 480 kilometres of range. The three trim levels include Base, Luxury and Sport, with prices starting at US $80,000 (no Canadian pricing is available). Orders are currently being accepted with deliveries starting in 2021. According to Karma, a utility vehicle and pickup are also being developed.
A Grand Prix race car from the distant past rises again
The Sleuth reckons you would have to be of a certain age to recall the Vanwall name. The race team begun by Englishman Tony Vandervell in the mid-1950s included Stirling Moss as principal driver. Vanwall’s greatest success came in 1958 when it won six races plus the Formula One Constructors’ Championship. It was the team’s final full season of competition.
Now, a British firm is reviving the Vanwall name and plans to build six continuation-series race cars resembling the winner. Each will be fitted with a modern 270-horsepower 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine. The company behind the project will retain one of the cars to compete at historic race events, with the remaining five available for purchase at US $2.14 million each.
Toyota readies a second-generation hydrogen sedan
The Mirai, which arrived for 2016, is one of the few vehicles to use lighter-than-air fuel instead of a wall plug for supplying electricity to the motor. The lack of fueling stations plus the cost of the vehicle have done little to spur sales, but The Sleuth confirms that a new and more attractive model arrives for 2021. The best part is that it will be sold or leased in other parts of the North America. It’s built using a rear-wheel-drive platform originating from Toyota’s Lexus division, which provides more interior space plus room for larger storage tanks (and 850 kilometres of range). Mirai pricing is expected to start in the $75,000 range in Canada.
Maybach crosses into the utility-vehicle zone:
The Sleuth wonders why it took Mercedes-Benz’s high-end nameplate so long to introduce its first square-back all-wheel-drive model for the upper-crust crowd. The Mercedes-Maybach GLS600 4Matic is late to a segment currently occupied by the Bentley Bentayga, Aston Martin DBX and Rolls-Royce Culinan. Compared with the others, however, the base price of US $161,550 makes the Maybach a relatively affordable choice (Canadian pricing is unavailable). It comes with a twin-turbocharged V-8 with electric assist, producing 550 horsepower and 538 pound-feet of torque. Unlike the standard Mercedes-Benz GLS, the Maybach has two rows of seats instead of three. As such, the second row is available with two fully reclining lounge chairs.
Ups and downs
Up: The final chapter of the Fast and the Furious:
According to entertainment e-magazine Deadline, there are three more movies planned for the series, including the Fast and Furious 9 release next May. According to Universal Pictures, Fast and Furious 11 will be the last. The Sleuth isn’t hearing about any surprise cast members (remember Charlize Theron’s appearance in Fast 8?), but Vin Diesel will carry on until the end and five-time Fast director Justin Lin will be involved for the final two flicks.
Up: De Tomaso is looking to the United States:
The Italian exotic-car brand established in 1963 by Alejandro de Tomaso — at one time owned by Ford — is currently seeking a new home on this continent. According to company CEO Ryan Berris, the US $850,000 P72 sports car would launch in 2022. Presumably, other future models would be built at a new facility.